The Finn-ishing touch

In Finland, most taxpayers never submit returns to the government. On the contrary, the Finnish government sends out completed tax returns to its citizens after assembling data from employers, financial institutions, insurance companies and other databases. Only 3 taxpayers in 10 need to provide additional information to modify the government’s statement. It is safe to say that the Canada Revenue Agency can only dream about that level of trust.

Compared to Finland, Canada appears to have set its goals for electronic government remarkably low: We want to cut costs, make services more efficient and demonstrate accountability, but Finland identifies trust as a primary goal of its public and private information technology activities and, as a result, gains greater efficiencies and a broader range of services.

In 2002, Olavi K

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